Lyft is working to make its rides more accessible.
The ride-hailing corporation the coming week joined with the National Federation of the Blind for a partnership that promises to increase awareness of blind passengers’ rights, proponent for effective public policies and expand transportation options for blind passengers and those with low vision.
“Companies like Lyft are empowering the blind to live the lives we want by providing fast, convenient and affordable transportation, ” National Federation of the Blind President Mark A. Riccobono said in a statement. “This empowerment can only be real and complete, nonetheless, if everything blind people, including those who employ guide dogs, are able to access the service when and where they need it, without fear that they will be refused service.”
Lyft said in a blog post that it would work with the federation’s engineering staff to make its app more accessible to blind clients. The ride-hailing corporation also promised to work with policymakers about transportation access and educate Lyft drivers about how to offer welcoming and all-inclusive rides for blind passengers.
According to the National Federation of the Blind, some of that the project works is concentrated in constructing sure drivers are welcoming of guide dogs.
“My wife Melissa applies a guidebook dog, and consequently our household has occasionally experienced the refusal of transportation services, which transgresses the legal and civil rights of the blind and people with physical disabilities, ” Riccobono mentioned. “The National Federation of the Blind praises Lyft’s commitment to improve its service to guide dog customers, and we look forward to working with Lyft to ensure that its efforts to do so are meaningful and effective.”
Uber and Lyft have both put more resources toward accessibility over the past year. Both companies have engaged non-emergency medical transportation and transportation options for senior citizens. Uber in 2015 added features to make its service more accessible for deaf and hard-of-hearing passengers. Uber also offers some features for blind and low-vision passengers, including voice technology.
“We have heard from many passengers with physical disabilities, including those who are blind or who have low vision, about how Lyft has transformed “peoples lives”, ” Lyft Director of Public Policy Annabel Chang said in a statement. “This partnership will help us continue to improve our services to better serve the blind and low vision community.”